The 15-year soap opera of Rocky Balboa comes full circle. Bankrupted by a crooked accountant, suffering from brain damage which prevents him from fighting again, Rocky sells his mansion and returns to the Philadelphia back streets of his youth. He trains up a young boxer (Morrison), but as his protégé falls prey to the manipulations of an impresario (Gant), Rocky almost loses sight of the most important thing in his life: his son. This is yooman drama, with Rocky as New Man and the fights taking place outside the ring. The back-to-basics approach, with original director Avildsen back at the helm, is sensible, since nothing could have topped the bone-crunching climax of Rocky IV. But whereas the first and far superior Rocky had real heart, this tries and fails to have brains. Sentiment is substituted for sorrow, shouting for anger, mumbling for self-doubt. The scenes between Sly and his real-life son Sage have a certain poignancy, but there are more perceptive insights into parent-child relationships in an Oxo ad. And Sage acts his dad off the screen.
Cast and crew
|Director:||John G Avildsen|